President Carter, Anthony Doerr, Matthew Quirk, & the Boys of Wall Street | Audiobook Reviews

redstarCarter, Jimmy. A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power. 6 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 6½ hrs. S. & S. Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781442372641. $29.99; digital download. POL SCI

acalltoaction080414Since founding the Carter Center in 1982 with his wife, Rosalyn, former U.S. president Carter has worked tirelessly to improve living conditions around the world. As a global peace worker, he witnesses the widespread mistreatment of women that is justified by religious texts and discriminatory laws. Despite already being the author of 27 well-regarded works, Carter states in his introduction that he believes this is “by far the most important” book of his career. Each chapter is devoted to an issue or practice that threatens the world’s women. The author’s devout Baptist beliefs heavily influence his arguments, but he also makes an effort to analyze issues through the lens of all the major world religions. The former president closes his book with 23 pointed actions that he believes will alleviate discrimination against women. Unfortunately, he directs the bulk of his excellent suggestions at world leaders and policymakers, leaving compassionate but politically unconnected listeners without a plan of action apart from lobbying elected officials. ­Verdict An exceptional consciousness-raising book about global sexual discrimination. Recommended for all collections. [“Women’s studies scholars and readers interested in international human rights may find these accounts of discrimination and abuse disturbing but should be challenged to respond to Carter’s call for action,” read the review of the S. & S. hc, LJ 6/15/14.]—Julie Judkins, Univ. of North Texas, Denton

redstarDoerr, Anthony. All the Light We Cannot See. 13 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 16 hrs. S. & S. Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781442375420. $39.99; digital download. F

allthelightwecannotsee080414Zach Appelman narrates Doerr’s tender World War II tale of two young people: Marie-Laure, blind since the age of six, and Werner, who was orphaned by a tragic mine accident. Marie-Laure’s father is the locksmith for a natural history museum, and when Paris falls, he and his daughter escape to the home of her great uncle Etienne in Saint Malo, carrying what may be a priceless diamond. Her father is imprisoned and soon Etienne and Marie-Laure become resistance fighters, sending clandestine radio transmissions. In Germany, Werner escapes the mines because of his mathematical ability and interest in radios and is sent to a training camp for Hitler youth. Werner is conflicted—he is receiving the education he wanted so desperately, but when confronted daily with injustice and brutality, he finally asks to leave. Instead, he is sent to the front. Using technology he helped develop, Werner is charged with finding and eliminating partisans such as Etienne and Marie-Laure. The listener knows that slowly, inextricably, Werner’s and Marie-Laure’s lives will intersect. But Doerr does not leave listeners in despair. Like light through the clouds, love, hope, and kindness peek through time and again. VERDICT Listeners must attend closely to this story of innocents caught up in the darkness of World War II. But if they do, they are rewarded with an excellent narration of a beautifully written story. [“The novel presents two characters so interesting and sympathetic that readers will keep turning the pages hoping for an impossibly happy ending,” read the starred review of the Scribner hc, LJ 2/1/14.]—Judy Murray, Monroe Cty. Lib. Syst., Temperance, MI

redstarQuirk, Matthew. The Directive. (Mike Ford, Bk. 2). 8 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 9 hrs. Hachette Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781611137019. $30; Playaway digital; digital download. F

thedirective080414Is this a technothriller? A book about con artists? A financial thriller? The simple answer is, all of these and so very much more! Mike Ford, who barely survived his last adventure (The 500), is back and facing his greatest challenge—marrying into an aristocratic English family that suspects he is only doing it for the money. Mike tries to reconcile with his estranged con man brother in time for the wedding, only to end up being blackmailed into the greatest robbery of modern time—the multi-billion-dollar insider trade caused by the well-timed interception of the Federal Reserve System governor’s directive. Jay Snyder’s narration is simply masterly and adds a rich layer to this superb novel. VERDICT Highly recommended. [“Sustained by Quirk’s research, an engrossing plot, the ever-increasing tension of a deadly cat and mouse game, and high stakes, this page-turner will attract not only fans of such financial-thriller authors as Christopher Reich and Joseph Finder but all those looking for a fun, fast-flowing beach read,” read the review of the Little, Brown hc, LJ 3/15/14.]—Scott R. ­DiMarco, Mansfield Univ. of Pennsylvania


Kelly, Kate. The Secret Club That Runs the World: Inside the Fraternity of Commodities Traders. 7 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 8 hrs. Brilliance Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781480597037. $62.97; 1 MP3-CD. library ed.; Playaway digital; digital download. BUS

CNBC reporter Kelly (Street Fighters) offers a glimpse into the world of commodities traders and those who attempt to regulate the often controversial $2 trillion commodities market. Kelly focuses mainly on energy (crude oil, heating oil, natural gas, etc.) but also touches on other commodities such as livestock, metals, and agricultural crops. She shines a light on the most mysterious part of the market—futures contracts and the derivatives based on them. Successful traders such as Pierre Andurant and Marc Rich are portrayed as cowboys running roughshod though a Wild West market that is not as carefully regulated as the stock market. Although she spends most time on the speculative traders, Kelly also depicts a few would-be reformers such as Gary Gensler, former head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Teri Clark Linden’s performance moves the narrative along nicely, but some listeners may wish that Kelly offered more background on the market as a whole along with her many descriptions of the lavish lifestyles of those involved in it. ­VERDICT Recommended to those who enjoy Wall Street exposés such as Michael Lewis’s Flash Boys.—Beth Farrell, Cleveland State Univ. Law Lib.

Lewis, Michael. Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt. 8 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 10 hrs. S. & S. Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781442370272. $29.99; digital download. BUS

flashboys080414Lewis (Moneyball) has a knack for illuminating complicated subjects. In this effort, he takes on high-frequency trading (HFT) in the U.S. equities market and that, post-2008, supposed reforms on Wall Street failed to end the worst pre-2008 excesses. Our story’s moral compass is provided by financial services executive Brad Katsuyama, who discovered that the stock market is essentially rigged by firms that use their superior speed (courtesy of advanced algorithms and supercomputers) to skim a little money off nearly every trade. Since many people’s retirement plans are tied to personal or mutual fund investments, this is an issue with currency for a wide audience. Katsuyama has helped form an alternative trading system in hopes of leveling the playing field. Narrator Dylan Baker, blessed with a strong story to tell, ably navigates the slippery minefield of high finance and low shenanigans. ­Verdict Highly recommended.—Kelly Sinclair, Temple P.L., TX

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The following titles are reviewed in this month's print issue.
Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.


Bishop, Anne. Murder of Crows. (Others, Bk. 2). 13 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 14¾ hrs. Recorded Bks. 2014. ISBN 9781470397739. $123.75; 13 CDs. retail ed.; 2 MP3-CDs. library/retail eds.; Playaway digital; digital download. F

Cole, Teju. Every Day Is for the Thief. 4 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 4¼ hrs. Recorded Bks. 2014. ISBN 9781490600659. $56.75; 1 MP3-CD. library ed.; Playaway digital; digital download. F

Iles, Greg. Natchez Burning. (Penn Cage, Bk. 4). 30 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 36 hrs. Harper Audio. 2014. ISBN 9780062331861. $65.99; digital download. F

L äckberg, Camilla. The Hidden Child. (Fjällbacka, Bk. 5). 12 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 15 hrs. HighBridge Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781622313211. $39.95; digital download. F

MacHale, D.J. Storm. (SYLO Chronicles, Bk. 2). 10 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 12¼ hrs. Dreamscape Media. 2014. ISBN 9781629233727. $59.99; digital download. F

redstarMcHugh, Laura. The Weight of Blood. 8 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 10 hrs. Books on Tape. 2014. ISBN 9780553546033. $50; digital download. F

Moon, Elizabeth. Crown of Renewal. (Paladin’s Legacy, Bk. 5). 2 MP3-CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 20 hrs. Brilliance Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781469263151. $14.99; digital download. F

Moyes, JoJo. Windfallen. 13 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 15 hrs. Tantor Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781452619835. $49.99; 2 MP3-CDs. retail ed.; digital download. F

Robertson, Paul. An Elegant Solution. 12 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 13¾ hrs. Recorded Bks. 2014. ISBN 9781470388980. $123.75; digital download. F

Shipstead, Maggie. Astonish Me. 8 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 10 hrs. Random Audio. 2014. ISBN 9780804165594. $40; digital download. F

Weiner, Jennifer. All Fall Down. 11 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 12 hrs. S. & S. Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781442367272. $39.99; digital download. F


redstarGallo, Carmine. Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds. 6 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 7½ hrs. Macmillan Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781427236180. $29.99; Playaway digital; digital download. BUS

Goetz, Thomas. The Remedy: Robert Koch, Arthur Conan Doyle, and the Quest To Cure Tuberculosis. 9 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 9¾ hrs. Recorded Bks. 2014. ISBN 9781490609652. $102.75; 1 MP3-CD. library/retail eds.; digital download. HIST/MED

Huffington, Arianna. Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder. 8 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 10 hrs. Books on Tape. 2014. ISBN 9780804193948. $35; digital download. BUS

Johnson, Paul. Mozart: A Life. 5 CDs. library ed. unabridged. 5¼ hrs. Recorded Bks. 2014. ISBN 9781470392482. $56.75; 1 MP3-CD. library/retail eds.; Playaway digital; digital download. MUSIC

Roberts, Robin with Veronica Chambers. Everybody’s Got Something. 7 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 7½ hrs. Hachette Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781478928515. $30; Playaway digital; digital download. memoir

Stone, Biz. Things a Little Bird Told Me: Confessions of a Creative Mind. 6 CDs. retail ed. unabridged. 6½ hrs. Hachette Audio. 2014. ISBN 9781478927754. $35; Playaway digital; digital download. AUTOBIOG

This article was published in Library Journal's August 1, 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.